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Toy Pistol Local Governance in Hambantota

Image courtesy Nidahasa The country woke up a few days ago to news that a group of opposition UNP MPs on a fact finding visit to the new airport and port in Hambanthota had come under attack from goon squads. Subsequently, photographs showed His Worship (the UPFA) Lord Mayor of Hambantota, Eraj Ravindra Fernando, chasing […]

The Rajapaksa ‘Sangamaya': Creating employees and customers of citizens

Image from Lanka Standard The following video features the last couple of a minutes of a longer speech delivered by Dr. Nihal Jayawickrama at the launch of The Sri Lankan Republic at 40: Reflections on Constitutional History, Theory and Practice, a collection of scholarly essays edited by Asanga Welikala, a Senior Researcher at the Centre […]

Quo Vadis, the Conga Line?

When Sri Lanka vied for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, there was a telling photograph taken at one of the bashes the regime threw in the Caribbean, the culminating event of a labour intensive, extravagant self-indulgent exercise. The photograph has Hon Namal Rajapaksha MP leading a conga line followed by the Governor of the Central Bank. […]

Bell Pottinger and Sri Lanka: A trail of spin doctoring and whitewashing

Aside from articles appearing last Sunday in the Sunday Times and the Sunday Leader, mainstream media in Sri Lanka has been curiously silent over recent revelations in the British media on the government’s connections with the infamous British PR firm Bell Pottinger. On 6th December, The Independent ran a story on how Bell Pottinger had […]

Local government elections: Military puppeteers, elected puppets, right to information and people’s liberties

[Editors note: The author is at the time of writing, the head of the Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte Municipal Council (SJKMC) campaign committee for the UNP. Groundviews is critical of all political parties and candidates, but not equally so. Harsha’s article is published here as the extension of a lengthy exchange on the topic of RTI Groundviews has spearheaded with […]

Searching for Sri Lanka’s Anna Hazare

Anna Hazare, courtesy Injustices.in Foundation It was just last week that the BBC featured a documentary describing the post war atrocities committed against vulnerable Tamil women in the north and east who are part of the captive Tamil population subject to heavy militarization. Although the state of emergency was suddenly and mysteriously lifted by the […]

EXCLUSIVE: Interview with TNA MP Suresh Premachandran on the LG elections, Parliamentary Select Committee and Political Solution

Photo from Wikipedia Groundviews caught up with TNA Member of Parliament Suresh Premachandran, who spoke to us about the nature of election violations that occurred in the Northern Province prior to the 23rd of July and on Election Day, which included intimidation, assault, bribery, voter transportation, continuous campaigning and reports of the systematic and forced appropriation […]

The state of tomfoolery: 2018 Comonwealth Games in Hambantota

A prominent English newspaper recently reported that the government has paid US$ 2.4 million to a British PR firm to promote its candidacy to host the 2018 Comonwealth Games in Hambanthota. This news item would definitely raise the eye brows of many Sri Lankans who constantly get beaten by the scourge of cost of living. […]

In conversation with Nelum Gamage: Does anyone give a damn about corruption?

Nelum Gamage, a Director of Transparency International Sri Lanka, was an erstwhile Director General of the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption (CIABOC), established in 1994 to direct the institution of prosecutions for offences under the Bribery Act and the Declaration of Assets and Liabilities Law, No. 1 of 1975. She is also […]

“Chiran Jayathu” – “Aayubowewa”

Let all as citizens comprising the civil society of Sri Lanka, join together in unison and with one voice, in response to the earnest appeal made by Renton de Alwis in “Back to Basics” stating “Our President is taking on the next phase of his governance. There is so much more he has to do […]

Tamils done with – Sinhalese to be done with

“Then they came for me” an oft quoted poem by German pastor Niemoller, in stressing the need for timely political action in difficult political contexts does have sense today, in its abstract form. Yet what is NOT said is that, Martin Niemoller was a dumb anti Communist who helped Hitler to come to power in […]

Bell Pottinger and Sri Lanka: Millions spent for what?

Bell Pottinger hired Qorvis Communications as a subcontractor for its work with the government of Sri Lanka, starting December 1, according to a filing with the US Department of Justice. Qorvis is providing media relations and monitoring, crisis communications planning, and stakeholder representation in the US. The budget is approximately $483,000. Though freely available on […]